Date: 22nd June 2007 at 10:20am
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Owls boss Brian Laws has thrown doubt over Steve Maclean’s future at Hillsborough by admitting the club have hit a ‘bit of a stumbling block’.

The on-going saga has led fans to believe the former Rangers and Scunthorpe striker will be on his way out Hillsborough this summer, and recent comments from Laws have given fans the biggest indication yet that he’ll be on his way.

Laws began discussions with Maclean along with Lee Bullen and Deon Burton at the end of last season, with Macca’s deal seemingly taking an age to sort out while Bullen and Burton had their futures sorted out almost immediately.

But a £50,000 payment to Rangers should Maclean sign a new deal at S6, and a sizeable fee to the player’s agent on the table should a deal go ahead means that Laws has a lot of work to do before any deal comes to fruition.

‘Steve knows exactly how I feel,but I have to admit that we have hit a bit of a stumbling block. One is his agent and his fee, the fee for Glasgow Rangers, and on top of that is his wages,’ Laws told the Yorkshire Post.

‘You accumulate them together and all of a sudden it’s a hefty, hefty wage bill which I don’t swallow too easily as that stops me bringing in other players.

‘We are trying to talk to his agent to be sensible, and also talking to Glasgow Rangers, but if that’s what scuppers the deal, that’s what scuppers the deal.’

The Scot has one of the best goals to games ratio in recent years at Hillsborough netting 32 from 60 starts in the famous blue and white shirt since his arrival in South Yorkshire in the summer of 2004.

His goals in his first season helped Wednesday to promotion under Paul Sturrock before injury put him out for the last few months of the season – but he returned in the play-off final to net the vital equaliser from the spot against Hartlepool.

And Macca impressed in his first full season in the Championship, netting 13 goals to be joint top scorer for the club despite making fewer starts than Deon Burton.